Heading to trial can be a nerve-wracking experience for even the calmest and most composed among us. While nervousness can make you uncomfortable, it does not control your words or actions. Through the last decade, we have utilized several non-binding concepts that may be useful to self-represented litigants and lawyers themselves.
The concept of Occam’s Razor is commonly used in a variety of disciplines, including law, medicine, science, and design. In simple terms, Occam’s razor means that when there is more than one potential explanation for an event, the simplest is the best. Using this method means you are shaving away excess information which may lead a position astray. It is necessary to remember that the solution must be plausible, reasonable and legally tangible.
The doctrine of reasonable inference is also an important consideration. Simply put, it is important to consider the facts of your case and what you say is the reason for an occurrence. If you intend to draw an inference based on the available facts, you must consider whether the inference is reasonable.
If there is more than one explanation for an incident then it is necessary to consider:
- Which explanation is reasonable;
- Which explanation is easily inferable;
- Are there any other natural or irresistible inferences that can be drawn based on the available set of facts; and,
- Has your assumption, or position been clouded by a series of inferences, which render the argument unreasonable?
Is Your Argument Eloquent?
When appearing in Court, it is important, to tell the truth when you are on oath. You must also consider whether your argument and the manner you deliver the argument is proper and courteous. This may include your appearance, attentiveness, speech and how respectful your responses are.
For the most part, providing an eloquent and convincing argument in Court depends on your ability to reduce facts and details as well as the points you want to deliver in the simplest terms. The “long-winded” dissertations peppered with high-brow phrases do not necessarily mean that it is an intelligent argument. Rather, if used incorrectly, it may lead to other legal positions which the Court may have to consider. The most crucial speaking skill you can have is the ability to accurately and efficiently speak your piece with as little fanfare as possible.
Is Your Position Advantageous?
Even if you do speak in plain and simple English, it may not necessarily mean that you will win. It may not necessarily mean that the Court will believe your version of events either. Some lawyers curate arguments better than others. Therefore it is important that you first seek legal advice from a lawyer about what you wish to say, and how you wish to put your point across.
When offering your position in court, consider the following points:
- Control – The demeanour you put your point across to the Court is something that can be taken into account by the Judges, Magistrates or jury members.
- Aggression is Never the Solution – This includes trying to forcibly put your point across.
- How to Get Your Position Heard – You should consider being clear and direct. Have you considered all your options? Are there other avenues you may pursue? Maybe what you are seeking is not available?
Understanding Legal Costs
Fear and confusion about costs often keep people from seeking the legal help they need. Here are some facts about legal expenses that can eliminate confusion.
- The time spent preparing your bill is not billable.
- Professional fees will cover your lawyer’s time, expertise, and effort. Your lawyer should provide you with their fee estimates in writing. There are two kinds of billing for these fees.
- Some lawyers elect to bill for an hourly rate basis for their services.
- There may be charges you may need to pay in addition to professional fees, such as disbursements, engaging external legal counsel and travel expenditures.
Professional fees may vary depending on several factors:
- Expertise – A specialist in a certain area of law will often charge more than a non-specialist.
- Location – Fees in rural areas are often lower than in large cities.
- Seniority – In some cases, a junior solicitor will cost less than a partner of a firm.
- Urgency – You will likely pay more if your matter is urgent and you need priority over others.
No matter your situation, you must remember you have rights, including the right to legal counsel. If you are in trouble, please do not hesitate to contact WN Legal. Our law practice has assisted hundreds of people in similar situations. We offer a free 30-minute consultation and will give you our honest assessment of your case.